After missing out on a scheduled August UFC bout due to Covid-19 protocols and the loss of his mentor and coach, Saul Soliz, due to the virus, Mana Martinez finally made his promotional debut versus Guido Cannetti at UFC Fight Night on August 28.
With all things considered, Martinez did not have what he felt was his best showing, but managed to pick up a split-decision win over Cannetti in his promotional debut and begin the next chapter of his career.
“I didn’t perform to the best of my abilities to be honest with you, however I was going through a lot and I feel like for me to step into the Octagon dealing with everything going on outside the fight took a lot of courage of me,” Martinez told MMAWeekly.com.
“I was still able to pick up the victory so I’m happy about that, but I wasn’t able to perform to the best of my abilities, and there’s a lot for me to work on, but I’ll be ready next go around.”
While he felt he had done enough to warrant a victory against Cannetti, Martinez admits he was worried he might not pick up the win with how judging can be unpredictable.
“There was some slight doubt in my mind because I know how judges can be sometimes,” said Martinez. “I know I had done enough, securing two takedowns and applying the pressure I did, having him backed on the fence multiple times.
“So in my mind I knew I had the fight won, but there was that slight doubt in my mind because you never know what the judges are watching.”
Now that he’s in the UFC, Martinez would like to close out the year on a winning streak in the promotion, and is willing to face any adversary that is placed in front of him.
“I’m definitely taking it one fight at a time, but I’m ready to get back in there,” Martinez said. “I’ve been in talks with my manager and we’re looking at late November or early December. I definitely want to get back in there by then and hopefully squeeze one more out before the end of the year.
“I’m always ready to scrap with anybody. That’s been the same my whole career. I’m ready for anybody. Unless it’s due to Covid complications or something out of my control, I’ll be ready for anybody and accept any fights that come my way.”